South Carolina Orchestra Performs Pruett’s Symphonic Edition

Associate Professor of Music Laura Moore Pruett's critical edition of Gottschalk's composition was used by Summerville Orchestra in February.

On February 11 and 12, 2022, South Carolina’s Summerville Orchestra performed Louis Moreau Gottschalk’s second symphony, Á Montevideo, as part of their American Rhapsody concert. The orchestra utilized Dr. Laura Moore Pruett’s critical edition of Gottschalk’s composition, currently in progress as part of the Music of the United States of America series project of the American Musicological Society, for their performance. The edition, along with Gottschalk’s first symphony, La nuit des tropiques, is slated for publication by A-R Editions in 2023.

Dr. Pruett highlights the importance of why hearing live performances of the symphony is so important to her research process:

“I’ve been working with the original, 19th-century handwritten manuscript for Gottschalk’s symphony for the past several years, shaping it into a critical edition using modern musical notation techniques, with final publication planned within the next year. The opportunity to hear the work in performance during the final stages of the editing process is a crucial component towards making this edition truly usable, something that orchestras from high schools to professionals can perform from, thus bringing to light the engaging orchestral compositions of this often-overlooked but incredibly dynamic American composer. I was delighted to work with the musicians and hear their rendition in the concert performances!”